Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) blocked two attempts to pass election bills this week, shortly after former special counsel Robert MuellerRobert (Bob) Swan MuellerDemocrats express private disappointment with Mueller testimony Kellyanne Conway: 'I'd like to know' if Mueller read his own report Graham: Mueller was 'pretty much a figurehead' of investigation MORE testified before lawmakers on Capitol Hill, warning that foreign governments likely will attempt to interfere in the 2020 elections.
Hundreds took to Twitter to decry the senator for blocking the bills. Democratic activist Scott Dworkin called McConnell a “traitor” and an “accomplice to the biggest traitor in American history — Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump to host 9/11 first responders at victim fund bill signing next week Turkey is not the center of the world — but it has our attention Photo of Mexican National Guard halting crying migrant mother and child goes viral MORE.”
“This is a man who prioritizes party over country to the extent that he is helping an adversary undermine our democracy,” MSNBC analyst Richard Stengel tweeted Saturday. “That's not right. It's the opposite of patriotism.”
“Let’s call this what it is: unpatriotic. The Kentucky Republican is, arguably more than any other American, doing Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinTurkey is not the center of the world — but it has our attention Scarborough calls McConnell 'Moscow Mitch,' says lack of action on Russian meddling is 'un-American' #45IsAPuppet trends after Trump appears in front of altered presidential seal MORE’s bidding,” Milbank wrote.
One of the measures requires the use of paper ballots and includes funding for the Election Assistance Commission, while the other would require candidates, campaign officials and their family members to notify the FBI of assistance offers from foreign governments.
McConnell blocked the two measures on Thursday, arguing that Democrats are trying to give themselves a "political benefit,” sparking backlash from Democrats over putting the bills into his “legislative graveyard.”
The Senate Intelligence Committee released a long-awaited report this week focused on election security and Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. The report found that “the Russian government directed extensive activity, beginning in at least 2014 and carrying into at least 2017, against U.S. election infrastructure at the state and local level,” adding that all 50 states were targeted in 2016.
The panel recommended considering the allocation of more funding to states for election security once existing funding runs out, in order to examine elections systems' vulnerabilities.